We are two weeks into our first disaster relief effort. Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas Gulf Coast about 20 days ago. I can say, without question this has been our busiest season to date. In the last 2 weeks we have doubled every number that we track. Doubled the meals, doubled the amount of food given away, and doubled the amount of volunteer hours. It has been a steep learning curve, but we are learning.
One of the things that I am learning is that we are far from finished with our recovery efforts. I went personally to one area today, only 4 miles from my house, and it was also the first day that FEMA had been to this neighborhood. I am talking about a neighborhood that saw 8-12 feet of water rush through their homes. A neighborhood where the water was literally up to the rooftops. They had banded together, as Texans do, but the needs are great. I think we will be helping feed this community for weeks, before they are able to even think of living in their houses again, much less getting the appliances to cook.
The other thing that I am learning, is that volunteers are awesome. I have always had a high regard for our volunteers, but the dedication, hard work, and can-do attitudes have lifted my spirits, and given me energy to keep plugging along.
We have a lot of work yet to do. I know we are up for the task. As Bishop Andy Doyle put it, "for such a time as this..." we are called.